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Spyridoula Kouti

Music Management

Music Management Student Spyridoula Kouti

Where are you from?

Greece     

Why did you choose Northumbria University, Newcastle?

I choose Northumbria University for many reasons - the most important one the course itself. I deeply believe in gaining an advanced knowledge of cultural economy practices from a reputable postgraduate course like Northumbria University's Music Management Masters. Of equal importance factors were its growing reputation and ranking in Britain's Education sector, and of course its affordability. I did A LOT of research before applying, and my choice didn't let me down! 

What do you think of Newcastle and our region and what are your favourite things to do?

Hmmmm, even though I haven't seen much of the rest England, I couldn't help but noticing Newcastle's architecture. There are some buildings-"diamonds" out there! Also, its nightlife! So many choices and different things to do, depending on your preferences. If you want to rent a bike and ride it by the Quayside on a lovely afternoon; or go for movies back in the city centre at Tyneside Cinema; or have a few drinks or a meal in Gate; or explore the creative side of the city, Ouseburn, you can do it! Such big a variety depending on your mood and budget - I love that! 

What has surprised you most about living in Newcastle and this region? What has impressed you most?

Its people. I know it sounds strange, but is the people. They are kind in an honest, genuine way. They are are willing to help in any case, no matter the occupation or status. It is feeling like you're home, safe and confident. 

Did you find Northumbria University welcoming?  Was it easy to fit in?

A lot! Being a student in a foreign country you worry about so many things - am I gonna be able to communicate, will I fit in, will I be comfortable enough to be myself? But really there is no need to think all that, at least here in Northumbria. It feels like stuff, students and professors they all know, you don't need to explain yourself - they just know. It is very important to know that not only you are accepted, but also that someone's got your back, that help is offered when you need it. It feels like somebody else is building YOUR future, because they know how. 

What have you enjoyed most about coming to Northumbria University?

The balannce! I mean everything is balanced (perhaps more around the course structure). I have time to study, go to work, volunteer in venues, hang out with my friends, have hobbies. Everything is structured that way that you can enjoy that you can combine many things. 

Who has helped you most since you came to Northumbria?

I guess the university teachers - especially the Program Leader - but as well as your classmates. 

Who has inspired you most at Northumbria University?

My program's leader. They say life is about the people you meet and the things you create with them... The guidance, mentoring, and the support that has been offered is amazing! 

What is the best thing about your course?

For me personally, the best thing was the fact that I didn't really face any difficulties in communicating and understanding the context of each module. What I really admired in the course structure was that it is as difficult as is needed in order to learn something new and move on, but not that difficult to make you feel an outsider. And taking it a step further, all these networking opportunities! 

What are the most valuable lessons you have learnt to date?

Organisation. Organisation. Organisation. If you want to make things happen, organize them well! 

What do you want to do in the future?  What skills have you learned/improved that you think will be of most use in your future career?

My ultimate goal is developing a career in the music industry. Everything that I'm doing and learning now is getting me closer to my passion. Every single thing counts; every minor lesson is equalyl important. Organizing and planning, communication skills, multi-tasks, team-working and so on are only a few of the key skills that I learnt in the context of cultural management. The most important tools though, you don't get them in a classroom; it's not the books that will teach you how to show empathy, to have a positive attitude and  being insistent - all valuable skills in cultural industry. It is the people that i have interacted with, within the terms of this course, that showed me how to look at the bigger picture. 

Have you worked on any projects with businesses or been on a placement?  What were your most memorable experiences?

I have been involved in a couple volunteer projects - within the terms of a placement - in a more administrative/ managerial level. The highlights? All those new things you get to learn, the ability to apply everything that you've learnt in class in real life conditions, and of course all these great people you get to meet. The thing that I will never forget is the guidance that is been offered, as these are my first steps in a more professional level. 

Have you taken up any opportunities to travel with your current course/undertake field trips?  If so, please tell us about them.

Unfortunately no. 

If you could offer some advice to students thinking of coming to study here what would you say?

Do it. It is this choice that you know you are never going to regret for, so just make it. For all these reasons; the low cost of living up here, the genuine people that you will meet, the professional opportunities that the uni make sure to be constantly offered. 

How do you feel you have changed as a person since being at Northumbria University, Newcastle (e.g. confidence)?

A lot, in many ways! I grew up; I gained confidence (in a personal as well as in a professional level); I took control of my life. 

If you had 3 words to sum up your time with us what would they be?

Valuable; Full; Not-wasted 

Would you recommend Northumbria University to a friend?

I already have.


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